Browns Not Shopping Former Top Pick Ahead of NFL Draft

Trade rumors have swirled around Cleveland Browns cornerback Greg Newsome this offseason, but according to a team insider, the team is not actively shopping the former first-round pick.

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Newsome’s position — both on the field and contract-wise — has put him in the crosshairs of rumors. He’s served as the team’s nickel cornerback, with Martin Emerson and Denzel Ward handling the duties on the outside. The Browns also have to decide on his fifth-year option, which will be worth $13.377 million.

Despite the speculation, Browns insider Brad Stainbrook of the Orange and Brown Report does not believe Newsome will be dealt during this week’s draft.

“Multiple organizations around the league have not heard of general manager Andrew Berry shopping the cornerback, a league source tells,” Stainbrook reported on April 25. “But one big question remains. Could a team that missed out on a cornerback on day one come calling Andrew Berry and the Browns on Friday? Absolutely, but the fact the Browns are not actively shopping Newsome says enough about how Cleveland views the corner.”

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Berry has said as much when addressing the Newsome rumors — although what a GM says publicly shouldn’t always be taken at face value.

“I want as many good corners as possible,” Berry said on April 18. “Your base offense and defense is really more three receivers and three corners in this day and age. So that’s really how we think about it.

“Corner is a premium position. We have three guys who can play press-man coverage at a very, very, very high level. That’s not a skill set that I’m looking to give away.”

While Newsome may not be traded, there are questions about his long-term future in Cleveland. The Browns have already locked up Ward with a lucrative deal. Emerson would appear to be in line to be the next. With some other big contracts on the books, it seems unlikely the Browns would have the ability to extend all three cornerbacks.

“While it is considered likely as of today that Cleveland will pick up the $13.377 million dollar 5th-year option for Newsome, there is no guarantee that Cleveland will extend the former first-round pick,” Stainbrook said.

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Newsome is not afraid to voice his opinions in interviews and on social media. When recently asked about his name being involved in trade rumors, he said it doesn’t bother him too much.

“I don’t pay attention. But obviously my family and stuff tell me and ask me,” Newsome said on Tuesday, April 16. “What goes through my head is nothing. I feel like I’m comfortable here. [Andrew Berry] and the ownership and all my coaches know what I’m capable of, they know what I bring to this team, not just on the field, being one of those glue guys — being a guy that’s always energetic, celebrating no matter what. I feel like they know my value. So I wasn’t too worried about that.”

Newsome notched career-highs in tackles (49), tackles for loss (4), pass breakups (14) and interceptions (2) last season.

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